Have you read Protoclown's god-awful story on
Enthusiasts? Well don't. It sucks. And on top of
that, it undermines every newfound truth I know to be evident. I
say newfound because less that one week ago I rode a real horse
for the first time. I've been known to slip a penny in the
Wal-Mart mechanical horse from time to time, but I found that
despite a realistic saddle and damn near on-the-money shaking
emulation, those robotic horses leave a lot to the imagination,
like “Could I, in the face of death, ejaculate while riding a
real horse at a full trot?”
It all started less than one week ago. The wife and I were
celebrating one year of marital bliss (if you rearrange the
words, you can spell "A bra it'll miss" which couldn't be
farther from the truth). We were in the mountains of southern
California, invading a charming little town called Julian, known
for it’s apple pie and bed and breakfast inns. We tipped off the
festivities by overpaying a couple of thieves to let us chap our
assess on these tamed beasts.
First let me say that movies do no justice to the power of a
horse. Albeit I’m a 180-lb mass of wet noodle, the stallion
responded like I was non-existent, kind of like my wife does.
Make no mistake about it, horses are as strong as an… ox.
Because of their raw power, the owners felt it necessary to
brief us on how to ride a horse. “First, put your left foot in
the…” Come on lady! I’ve seen enough western’s to know! I’m a
fuckin’ pro already. Now back off, let me saddle this bad little
bitch and I’ll ride off in the sunset like those guys in the
Maybe I’ll swoop up some little female commoner while she’s
picking flowers in the canyon, ride until the sun sets and end
up drinking swill under a dying oak tree. We’ll wake up to the
sound of rattlesnakes in my Adidas and then I, with a
lightning-quick draw, will summon my two six-shooters (actually,
I’d prefer hardballers) and turn the slitherers in to colanders.
The horse I was riding was pretty brown girl named Medallion.
Make no mistake about if folks, Medallion was no My Little Pony.
Although her mane did smell a bit like the strawberry one if you
left it out in the sun too long.
McClain braves the great indoors.
I pretended she was a he, wore a jet-black coat and was named
“Othello the Grit.” I was afforded plenty of time to imagine,
because most of the trail ride consisted of going up and down
mild hills at the pace of an earthworm with a prosthetic ass. I
could have put on chaps and briskly walked up and down the
trails while slapping my own ass, but it wouldn’t have been the
same. Those of you who have tried slapping your own ass know
what I’m talking about.
After the safety brief, where I was issued a helmet, gloves and
atropine, I mounted my mare and waited for everyone else to do
the same. I guess I’m a natural ‘cause I hopped up like I was
John Wayne. It wasn’t so hard to stay balanced on the horse, but
keeping the fucker from trying to run away was a challenge.
Medallion, I mean Othello the Grit, was an antsy horsey. He
(she) kept wanting to stick his face in the ass of another
horse. The lady warned me, “Don’t let Medallion nip at the
“Fuck that shit!” I thought. “If Othello wants to bite some ass,
so be it! Who am I but a lowly passenger to tell this
magnificent animal what to do?” But just to test the
responsiveness of Othello, I tightened the reigns and yelled,
“Whoa, girl! WHOA! Don’t smell his ass you filthy whore!” It
worked. I felt like I had done this a thousand times. I imagined
that I was a pro, but that to remain modest was a great
nobility. “Pssh. I’m a pro. There’s nothing they can teach me!
But I’ll keep my mouth shut so the instructor feels special. To
remain modest is a great nobility.”
No McClain... NO.
Now that I think back on my experience, it really wasn’t that
eventful. The only thing that kept it truly interesting was that
little devil on my shoulder telling me to “GO GO GO!” It almost
got the best of me. I found myself digging my heels in to the
side of the horse. It would startle and begin to trot, but then
I’d have to give the reigns a hefty yank and yell, “WHOA, girl!
WHOA WHOA!” I could see the animal rights freaks in a flurry of
concern. They would picket the ranch with signs reading “CRUELTY
CULTIVATORS” and I’d laugh and throw sloppy vegetables at their
I suppose the suspense of going down a steep hill while riding
the horse kept me mildly entertained as well. I kept imaging
Othello’s knees snapping under the intense pressure, shooting me
forward at such a speed that I could either do a face dive in a
pile of pine cones, or swiftly land on the horse to my front.
From there, the only viable option would be to throw the
original rider down the ravine and steal his horse. Then, when
the instructor lady caught wind of what just happened, she would
quickly trot on her champion horse to parallel me and attempt to
thwart my escape. I’d kick her in the ribs and she’d go down
hard. I think she’d probably roll down a hill and whimper, too.
But before her champion stallion got away, I’d grab his reigns
quickly and he’d accompany me and my current horse as we gained
ground in the thick woods. Oh, and Othello would follow us. Even
with broken legs his dedication ran deep, and because of his
personal sacrifice, I wouldn’t shoot him dead like one is
supposed to do with a crippled horse. I’d just let him die then
me and the other two horses would have an Othello barbecue
somewhere deep in the mountains. We’d whinny and recount the
story of how I kicked the instructor lady in the ribs. Then one
of the other horses would mention that he saw her fall on a
sharp stick and puncture her gut. We’d laugh more and raise our
steins in merriment!
Back to reality. I was the third horse in a single-file line of
five and all I wanted to do was zoom past those first two. I
figured that if I could find my way to town fast enough, I could
patrol the streets and harass shoppers. I imagined myself
swooping down and stealing shopping bags right out of the
unsuspecting tourists hands. Slapping the backs of heads.
Spitting on display windows. Screaming my head off! And all from
the safety of my horse! Citizens would shriek and jump from the
sidewalk in to the street to evade being clobbered under the
weight of Othello’s stalwart trot, only to be hit by veering
cars. I sparked chaos in the streets of Julian! The stock prices
of apple pies will plummet! Mwahahah! Who could stop me? Not a
car! They’d be to afraid to hit the horse and dent their fender.
Not the cops! Their bullets would bounce off of Othello’s thick
hide. Who can stop me? Not the National Guard! It would take
them weeks to assemble. WHO CAN STOP ME?
The grim reality that my imagination was the only thing making
this interesting stopped me. But you know what? If I could have
at least jumped a fence, ran around in circles or parked the
horse then been able to slap it on it’s ass as a gesture to run
free, I would have been satisfied. But no. I wrapped up the
episode by feeding it carrots. Next time I’m just going to steal
a horse because that’s the only way to have fun while riding for
real. In the beginning I divorced the idea of riding a
mechanical horse because it left my perceptions unsatisfied.
When I rode a real horse, all I was doing was imagining. The
best parts of my experience are the parts that never happened.
Ironically, I’m still a horse enthusiast. And I’m sorry your
legs got broken, Othello the Grit.
note: McClain did eventually ride
off into the sunset, but he got frustrated when he realized the
sad truth that he couldn't actually ride his horse into the sun.